ISU Lecture Series to be presented virtually throughout fall semester

Iowa State Memorial Union

Jill Even

The Iowa State Lecture Series will be presented virtually this semester to deliver information to students while mitigating virus exposure on campus.

According to the Lecture Series website, “The Lecture Series brings to campus a broad spectrum of talks, political debates, academic forums and cultural events, including musical performances, art and dance programs and films.”

This semester, the Lecture Series will be presented virtually live over WebEx or pre-recorded on YouTube with a live Q&A session with the presenter after airing. Books authored by lecturers will be available in the ISU Bookstore.

Amanda Knief, director of the Iowa State Lecture Series, said a goal of this semester is to preserve the outlet of knowledge that the Lecture Series provides for those interested.

“Between those two platforms, we’re hoping to get out quite a few lectures this semester to keep the history of the lectures program, which provides a lot of added value, new information and opportunities for students to explore topics that they otherwise wouldn’t have the opportunity to do,” Knief said.

The lecture Knief is looking forward to most is the first one, titled, “How to Heal: Nine Natural Therapies You Can Use To Release Your Trauma,” presented by Jessi Beyer on Sept. 14.

“The pandemic is a trauma no matter what your perspective,” Knief said. “[…] It will be good having someone come in and talk about how to recognize trauma, how to release it and rid yourself of that. She’s also going to offer some tips for those who are in a position to help others. It’s important to be able to provide students, faculty and community members with an event that recognizes that [the pandemic] is a trauma, and it’s important to let people know that it’s okay to not be okay right now, and there is help.”

Knief also said while there are less opportunities for extra credit for students through the lecture series, extra credit will still be available nonetheless. She said that having less students going through the Memorial Union has made it difficult to spread the news of how the lecture series is running.

A few weeks before school started, the lecture series was hoping to have some in-person events, but the faculty felt it was not wise to have a large gathering on campus, and it would’ve been difficult to have lecturers attend in-person.

“One of the things that makes lecture so special is we bring people in to Iowa State to have that one-on-one interaction with students, and that’s just not possible right now,” Knief said. “What we are focusing on right now are what issues our students are dealing with, what topics are most in the news and what can we do to give students content they couldn’t otherwise find online.”